Title Insurance companies are under attack by governmental officials. Few other real estate businesses suffer the unjustified, frequent assaults by government officials like the title insurance profession. The difficulty in understanding their function and underestimating their necessity for the safe transfer of real estate requires real estate practitioner’s to raise their pens to protect our transfer system. Since the mortgage crisis six years ago, the little-known and seldom-used doctrine of ancient mortgages has become important as a result of the decrease in the number of lending institutions still in business. The title industry, using this statute in part, has ensured that transfers would not stall during the worst real estate crisis.
Section 1931 of the Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law is an obscure statute that allows mortgagors and others with sufficient interest in a property to discharge “ancient mortgages,” which would otherwise potentially cloud title. An “ancient” mortgage is one that, due to the lapse in time, is presumed satisfied. Despite no mention in the statute, it is well-settled New York common law that the required lapse in time for a mortgage to be considered “ancient” is 20 years past its due date.1
This content has been archived. It is available through our partners, LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law.
To view this content, please continue to their sites.
LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law are third party online distributors of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law customers are able to access and use ALM's content, including content from the National Law Journal, The American Lawyer, Legaltech News, The New York Law Journal, and Corporate Counsel, as well as other sources of legal information.
For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]